Firefox has long been renowned for its customisability and plethora of extensions, but Google Chrome has gained a lot of popularity in the past few years among web design pros and developers. One of the reasons for this is its speed and built-in developer tools. And now, with a burgeoning collection of Chrome extensions that's growing by the day, it's becoming the first port of call for many web developers and designers.
Here is our selection of 30 Chrome extensions to make your life better.
This powerful Chrome extension allows you to create designs then export them into a CSS file for use on your site. It supports layers and contains a plethora of the tools that you're used to from your regular photo editor.
This brilliant extension will take your code and output snapshots for your demos and mockups. You can also add themes and effects to create images for promo and your online portfolio.
As a web developer, you may be required to test your web pages. Repeating the same actions over and over again can be a tiresome process. iMacros is a handy Chrome extension which lets you record your actions and save them so you only need to do them once. After that you can test your pages over and over again repeating the action with a click of a button, saving valuable time and letting you concentrate on more pressing matters.
04. Font Playground
Every designer and developer out there will find this extension invaluable. Font Playground lets you experiment with the local fonts and the entire library of Google fonts on a live webpage without making any actual changes. The beauty of this extension is that it includes all the different font weights, styles and text effects so that you can visualise your webpage before you implement the changes.
05. Window Resizer
This Chrome extension is a very useful tool that does exactly as it says on the tin – resizes your browser window to help you with your responsive website designs. Choose from a list of popular monitor dimensions or add custom sizes and resolutions for increased accuracy.
06. Project Naptha
If you ever find yourself working from a mockup image with embedded text, Project Naptha could save you a world of mild irritation. Thanks to some smart OCR trickery it enables you to highlight, copy and paste text from any image; it can even translate it for you too.
07. What Font
A very useful Google Chrome extension, What Font allows developers and designers to identify the fonts being used on a web page. So, if you stumble upon a fancy-looking web font that you want to use in one of your future projects, just hover over it and find out instantly which font it is.
This tool doesn't just check how quickly your web page loads, it also tells you what, if anything, is slowing it down. Yslow tests your webpage against 23 of the 34 rules identified by Yahoo's performance team. It's an extremely useful tool to analyse web pages and it also suggests ways to improve their performance.
09. Web Developer
As a web developer, you might ask yourself how you have lived without this extension. It adds a toolbar button to Chrome with a plethora of useful web developer tools. It's the official port of the Web Developer extension for Firefox.
10. Page Ruler
Page Ruler is a great tool for precisely measuring the elements on any web page, then manipulating it for your benefit. Draw a ruler to get pixel dimensions and positioning.
This tool allows you check all if your web pages are following best practice when it comes to SEO, usability, accessibility and performance (page speed). So, if, for example, you don't have an H1 tag on a web page or if a web page is missing its meta title or meta description, it will notify you so you can fix the issue quickly. If you click the 'more info and help' link at the bottom of the extension you will find a more in-depth checklist.
A true gem for all web developers out there, DevTools AutoSave allows you to automatically save any changes that you make to a webpage's CSS and JS via the Chrome Dev Tools environment to its source file. It's easy to set up and use and it will save you lots of time.
Turn any web page into a wireframe with just one click. This Google Chrome extension helps web developers and designers view web pages, whether local or live on the web, with a wireframe overlay.
The ColorZilla Chrome extension is an advanced eyedropper, colour picker, gradient generator and more useful colour tools that will help you in your design – right there in your browser window.
15. Ripple Emulator
Ripple Emulator is a multi-platform mobile environment emulator that can help you test your web app using a number of different devices and screen resolutions. Ripple can be used in conjunction with existing development tools to perform debugging, DOM inspection and automated testing.
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